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UCLan cyclists to compete alongside Olympic stars

21 August 2014

Lyndsey Boardman

Cycling team invited to elite cycling event

The University of Central Lancashire (UCLan) is one of four university teams to be invited to take part in an elite cycling event alongside Olympic and World Championship athletes.

As one of the UK’s top Four University cycling teams UCLan will join Glasgow, Loughborough and Southampton in a varsity race as part of the elite track‐cycling competition Revolution Series which is organised by cycle sport events and entertainment company FACE Partnership.

It is the first time the event has included entrants from British Universities & Colleges Sport (BUCS) and the teams will go head-to-head during the first round of the Revolution 2014‐15 season in London’s Lee Valley VeloPark on Friday 24 October.

Two initial heats will lead to a grand final race to decide the UK Champions in front of a five thousand strong audience at the iconic Velodrome as part of a weekend of elite track cycling.

Now in its twelfth year, the Revolution Series has established itself as the UK’s premier track cycling series and is the next big event in the elite track cycling calendar following the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games.

“It’s brilliant that the UCLan Cycling Team has been invited to take part in this elite race series and it shows the standard to which the team performs.”

The idea behind the varsity race is to build on the legacy from both the Commonwealth Games and the London 2012 Olympic Games that aimed to promote and encourage cycling amongst school and university students. The race provides students with the opportunity to compete alongside male and female World, Olympic and Commonwealth Champions; it had just been announced that Ben Swift and Luke Rowe will be competing in round one of the series.

Josie Linsel, UCLan Students’ Union Activities and Participation Officer, commented: “It’s brilliant that the UCLan Cycling Team has been invited to take part in this elite race series and it shows the standard to which the team performs. To compete at such an event is a great opportunity earned by the cyclists and one I am sure they will enjoy.”

FACE Partnership MD James Pope said: “We are delighted to be introducing a varsity race into the Revolution programme this season. As always, we want to ensure that the racing we put on is as exciting as possible and I can’t think of a more intense rivalry in sport than between British Universities.

“As always, we want to ensure that the racing we put on is as exciting as possible and I can’t think of a more intense rivalry in sport than between British Universities.”

“Olympic Champions Chris Hoy and Victoria Pendleton were both BUCS track cycling record‐holders so we are expecting high‐quality performances from these teams. It is great to be able to expand on our support of the future stars of British cycling by inviting these students to demonstrate their talent and race alongside such prestigious names in UK sport.”

The UCLan Cycling Team has already tasted success at a high level after the University broke the record of the men’s team pursuit race at the BUCS Track Cycling Championships 2013 in Glasgow. Not only did they set a new record, they smashed through the time set by Heriot-Watt University in 1997 when the six-time Olympian Chris Hoy was part of the record setting team.

The varsity race will become the fourth element of the Revolution Series alongside the Elite Championship, Future Stars competition and UCI classified sprinting and women's endurance races. Revolution promoters are offering concession ticket prices for students across the weekend. Tickets are available online at www.cyclingrevolution.com